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Warren Bernhardt (born in November, 1938 in Wausau, Wisconsin) is a noted pianist in jazz, pop and classical music.Read More...
His father was a pianist, leading him to have early childhood exposure to piano, and he learned some rudiments of keyboarding from his friends. At five his parents moved to New York City where he began studying seriously under varied instructors. After the death of his father in 1957 he quit music for a time to study chemistry and physics at the University of Chicago. In that city he would be exposed to the blues and jazz, which would influence the rest of his career.
From 1961 to 1964 he worked in Paul Winter's sextet, which led to his return to New York. Once in New York, he worked with George Benson, Gerry Mulligan, Jeremy Steig and others. He also developed a close relationship with the legendary pianist Bill Evans, who served as a mentor to Bernhardt. Bernhardt released several solo LPs in the 1970s, and eventually became a member of the jazz fusion group Steps Ahead while continuing to work on solo projects.
In 1971, he provided the piano accompaniment to Don McLean's vocals in American Pie's Crossroads.
The Warren Bernhardt Trio's Trio '83 CD (DMP CD-441) is believed to be the first fully digital jazz release when it appeared on Compact Disc and Digital Audio Tape (DAT) in 1983 from DMP Digital Music Products. Bernhardt has gone on to release additional jazz and classical recordings over the past twenty years, and is also featured in a series of highly-regarded jazz piano teaching sessions in both audio and video formats from Homespun Tapes.
Bernhardt toured as the musical director with Steely Dan in the United States from 1993–1994, and can be heard on Steely Dan's Alive in America CD. He has more recently performed with Simon and Garfunkel's Old Friends tour, on Art Garfunkel's solo tours, and can be seen on the Art Garfunkel DVD and HDTV presentation Across America.